We all get stuck into our groups whether it’s based on our faith, philosophy, ethnicity or income level or a combination of the above. These groups make assumptions about the “others” that are based on the readings and/or writings of “their leaders”. We respect our leaders because of their education, ability or talent but that doesn’t mean they are always right. We can then take the assumptions made by a leader and pre-judge the group as a whole, without looking at the individuals who make up such a group. We also can get in the “defend our “leader” mind sight, which might lead us to argue against what we truly belief because it came from our “leaders” mouth. This can create unnecessary tensions between people’s who might have more in common then they are led to believe.
It is important to battle assumptions about “others” that aren’t in your group. The key is to have open discussions with other members from that group. These discussions should be free of the PC police but also should be polite and respectful, enabling all sides to speak, not just the “leaders”. When we achieve such discussions we will see ( in most cases) that although we will disagree we have more that unites us then divides us.